This from Jody:
“Nouns and verbs are learned in different parts of the brain”
The Problem with CI
Jeffrey Sachs was asked what the difference between people in Norway and in the U.S. was. He responded that people in Norway are happy and
4 thoughts on “Nouns And Verbs Are Learned In Different Parts Of The Brain”
One of my colleagues said that English is a noun-based languages and Romance languages are verb-based. Does this make sense to anyone?
I found I was not particularly interested in where nouns or verbs are learned in the brain.
What fascinated me about this study was that the “research task” simulated one of the major ways humans really acquire vocabulary (and structure-my opinion): by discovering the meaning of new words in written or verbal contexts.
The study’s results showed that the regions of the brain associated with the representation of the meaning of nouns and verbs are also associated with “establishing correspondences between these meanings and new words”–a process that is necessary for learning a second language.”
These correspondences sure aren’t going to happen very well in classes where students must memorize vocabulary lists or do pattern fill-in worksheets from grammar texts. It will happen well in classrooms where compelling, repetitive, story-based, CI is happening, and students are required to engage with said CI in meaningful ways.
The evidence mounts. 🙂 Let’s keep talking about tprs. I want to keep learning.
…these correspondences sure aren’t going to happen very well in classes where students must memorize vocabulary lists or do pattern fill-in worksheets from grammar texts. It will happen well in classrooms where compelling, repetitive, story-based, CI is happening, and students are required to engage with said CI in meaningful ways….
The clear implication in what you say here, Jody, is that if we don’t speak comprehensibly to our students in the target language, then they won’t learn it. It’s like aiming a rocket at the stars and having it plunge into the ocean under the weight of an insufficient fuel and boosting system. How many times do we need to do that before we grasp that reaching the stars means flying a rocket with fuel and a boosting system that can actually get it there? And I don’t care what we call it – the Language Acquisition Model, TPRS, Comprehensible Input Methods, Storyasking, whatever – as long as Krashen is the guy who designs the rocket and mixes the fuel, we can call it anything – it’ll get there – it’ll reach the stars.
I ran across this same article a little while ago (through Hoagie’s which is a great website, btw). And that is almost exactly the conclusion I came to as well. Personally, I am fascinated by the brain research, almost as much as Ben seems to be fascinated by French grammar… but the real application, is that we have to be forming these connections. I also thought, perhaps this is the physical “evidence” of early and late acquired structures…?